Anesthesia is medicine that helps reduce your pain and make you less aware of what is happening. It can calm you and make you feel drowsy before surgery at Wayne UNC Health Care.
Types of Anesthesia
Your anesthesia care team can recommend several options based on your type of procedure.
General anesthesia puts you in a sleep-like state. You don’t feel pain because you’re unconscious. General anesthesia usually uses a combination of intravenous (IV) medicines and gasses you breath in (anesthetics).
Monitored Anesthesia Care
Monitored anesthesia care is also known as conscious sedation or twilight sleep. It’s given through an IV to make you sleepy and calm during a procedure. You’re typically awake, but groggy, and you can follow instructions as needed.
Regional anesthesia numbs the region of the body where your procedure is performed. This anesthesia includes peripheral nerve blocks, spinals, and epidurals.
Local anesthesia uses a numbing medicine just on the area undergoing treatment. You may also receive sedation to relax you.
What Anesthesia Will I Get?
Your care team will decide what type of anesthesia to use based on many factors, like your:
- Type of surgery
- Medical history
With all types of anesthesia, we’ll closely watch your blood pressure, heartbeat, and oxygen levels to keep you healthy during surgery.
Rest assured, it’s safe to receive anesthesia. However, you may notice side effects such as:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Headaches after general or spinal (regional) anesthesia
- Dry or sore throat if you received a breathing tube during general anesthesia
- Damage to capped teeth, dentures, or tooth diseases
- Short-term memory loss as general anesthesia or sedation wears off
Before surgery, tell your care team if you:
- Have felt sick after receiving anesthesia in the past
- Have any dental issues
- Have heart or lung conditions
Anesthesia Care Team
Your anesthesia care team will include an anesthesiologist and a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA).
Anesthesiologists are doctors who have gone through three or more years of specialized anesthesia residency training after medical school. CRNAs are advanced practice nurses. After at least one year of critical care experience, they complete two to three years of in-depth study and clinical work in anesthesia.
You will always have a CRNA with you, from the beginning to the end of surgery. Your anesthesiologist will check in on you and watch you closely as well.